I'm a 36 year old librarian who loves to run, read, do yoga and hang out with my friends and family. I ran the 2008 & 2009 Boston Marathon for Team Eye & Ear to support the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. Go Team Eye & Ear!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Life's Simple Pleasures

Sitting down to a homemade dinner, a cold Corona and the Sox. Ahhhhh.
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Friday, June 26, 2009

Memphis is the team Thabeet

Well, not really because they're terrible, but congrats are in order for the #2 NBA Draft Pick, Hasheem Thabeet!

Thabeet's not that tall- he's just in 24" heels...

Hasheem Thabeet joins former UConn player Rudy Gay in Memphis.

There's a great photo gallery posted on Courant.com that showcases former UConn draft picks. I was happy to a rare photo of my all-time favorite player, Doron Sheffer.

I even named my first car Doron, and I drove it into the ground. Nick finally convinced me to get a new car while we were dating, and in retrospect it was the smart thing to do. Doron was dented & scratched, had 1 hubcap, the side paneling was missing from 1 side, a spring had burst through the driver's seat and poked me in the rear end while I drove (I defended that by saying it kept me alert), and the A/C couldn't be used if there was a passenger in the front seat because it leaked all over the floor... Oh, somehow the dashboard lighting died and rather than pay $300 for the fix, I drove around guesstimating my nighttime speed for 3 years...

Nick told me that in auditor-speak Doron was a material weakness; however, I loved that car and still miss it.

Doron on the day I left him in the Ford lot...

I ended up leasing a Ford Focus for 2 years after this, and Ford paid a whooping $300 for the trade-in.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Lunchtime Impulse Buy

Hey, gold is a smart investment these days
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Humidity: Nature's Hair Mousse

Like the Grinch's heart, my hair grew 3 sizes today!

"Don't hate me because I'm beautiful; this is my hair when I wake up in the morning."

Like this look? Recreate it for cheap in 2 easy steps:
1. Style hair as normal, and walk 7 or so city blocks in the damp warm weather.
2. Sit for 10 minutes on a hot crowded bus.

Monday, June 22, 2009

This Wine & I Will Get Along, or, A Re-cap of Tuesday in the Tasting Room at Ivy

Last Tuesday, Nick, Jenny, Brad & I headed to Ivy in Downtown Crossing for "Tuesday in the Tasting Room." The event featured 4 Rosé wines that were each paired with hors d'oevres. Ivy did a great job putting this together; you had to sign up in advance, and the number of attendees was limited so we had room to move around and not feel cramped. All in all this was a great deal for $20/person, especially since they were very generous with refills and food.

After checking-in, we each received a card that listed a brief description of each wine and a few lines to jot down some tasting notes. I can't say that our reviews are on par with something one might read in, "Wine Aficionado;" however, I never said we were sophisticated.

The 1st tasting was Mulderbosch Rosé from South Africa, and is described as "layers of strawberry, cherry, roses & fresh peaches on the nose." (I'm not sure if "on the nose" is a phrase commonly associated with describing wine, or if it's a fancy way of wording that this Rosé smells like fruit...) Anyway, my distinguished panel of friends threw out "refreshing!" and "summery!" after tasting this one. The food pairing with this wine was a tasty roasted eggplant/veggie medley over crostini.

The 2nd tasting was las Rocas Rosado from Spain, which is "made from 100% Garnacha & offers up a fragrant nose of kirsch & strawberry." Or, as my group stated more succinctly, "not a huge fan." I believe the food pairing with this was a cheese croqueta; however, I'm not entirely sure. At this point in the evening, I began to suffer the same consequences that happen when I drink red wine (namely severe heartburn) and I more or less stuck to tasting Ivy's water at this point. (Inferior grade, yet potable.)

Moving on, the 3rd wine was Chateau Ste. Michelle "Nellie's Garden" Rosé from Washington State. According to the card, this Rosé "shows beautiful fruit aromas & flavors of strawberry, raspberry & subtle spice notes." Or as Nick said, "Good. I like this." Perhaps feeling poetic after several glasses of wine, Brad declared it to be "enduring." Nellie's Garden was served with a stuffed cherry pepper.

The 4th and final tasting was Jaboulet "Paralelle 45" Rosé from France. This wine was everyone's favorite and is professionally described as having "floral & crushed red cherry aromas, with full-bodied, ripe, mineral-driven fruit on the palate." Nick took one sip and exclaimed, "This wine and I will get along!" The hors d'oevres were to die for; deep-fried dates stuffed with risotto.

At the event, Ivy's staff was really friendly and the woman representing the wine distributor was more than willing to answer our questions. We've already signed up for the next tasting on July 14th, which is "Sparkling Wines from Around the World!" (The exclamation point is Ivy's, although I am rather excited about that tasting myself!) You can email events@ivyrestaurantgroup.com to sign up.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Big-ass Fool in the Rain

This lady's umbrella reminded me of the giant skirt in the nutcracker that all the ballerinas fit under. She could host a party under this thing! Save it for the outdoor patio table, not the city sidewalk, please!
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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Disco Stu Likes the Party Trolley

While travelling around the city, I usually try to walk wherever I'm going. If that's not possible or convenient, I'll take a bus or the T. In some instances, I'll cab it or even drive myself. On Saturday night, I realized the best way to get around is the Party Trolley. You can't dispute the epicness of any mode of transportation that has its own disco ball.

Shake, shake, shake... shake, shake, shake... Shake your booty

In the almost 12 years I've lived in Boston, I've seen the party trolley about 100 times. It looks like the trolleys that give the daytime tours, but there's a disco ball and colorful flashing lights. Admittedly, every time I would see a group of people cruising around in one I'd think that it was either high school kids on their way to a prom, or a group of adults on an awkward corporate function.

We arrived at my friend's apartment in SoWa Saturday night for his 30th birthday party. John's wife had kept the outing a secret from everyone in order to ensure that he'd be completely surprised. About an hour into the party, Leigh blew a whistle and instructed a couple of guys to carry some coolers downstairs and for the rest of the party to follow them outside. We walked to the front of the building, and there it was waiting for us.

All aboard the drunk bus

Leigh plugged in an iPod, the lights started flashing, and we were on our way. At first, everyone sat and enjoyed the ride.

Much better than the T

However, it didn't take long for celebratory beers and shots to kick in, and seats were abandoned. We became that group of people that dangles beers out the window, while yelling, "Wooooooooo!" at anyone who would listen. Many asked to join our tour, several tried to force themselves on, and one man even tried offered us his ice cream cone from J.P. Licks in exchange for a lift.

Birthday boy & friends on the trolley

At one of our stops, Game On, doing my best to ruin a photo

All in all, a great (and safe) way to move a large group of people around Boston. The only downside to the freedom offered by the Party Trolley, is that its final destination is Hangover Station.

Monday, June 15, 2009

You Can Chew It

So you know those Snickers ads that are all over the city's billboards, buses, etc? Apparently there's a site where you can make translate your name to, "Snacklish."

Alicia in Snacklish sounds slighlty gross...

Nick didn't do too much better.

Dwayne's is the catchiest, I think...

And there you have it! Another time waster.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Here's a Red Bush I Can Get Onboard With

It's no secret that I love the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith. Tea plays a very important role in the books, and 2 of the main characters, Mma Ramotswe and her assistant, Mma Makutsi take many tea breaks during the course of the day. I had never heard of bush tea before, but it is Mma Ramotswe's tea of choice and its positive effects are mentioned quite frequently in the books. The tea is characterized for having a fairly distinct taste, that people either love or hate. I've been so curious to try this tea and was surprised that Tazo sells African Red Bush tea, which is available at Starbucks.
This afternoon I tried my first cup and enjoyed it! It in no way reminded me of rats, which Mma Makutsi I believe once compared the smell to...

Mma Ramotswe was right, as usual.

45 Province Not Adverstising its Greatest Asset

Last May, I wrote about the 45 Province building that was quickly being built. Well, yesterday while on my way to Chacarero, I noticed that there was a vehicle from the mayor's office and someone wielding a giant pair of scissors. I'm guessing there was some sort of grand opening official ribbon-cutting ceremony, or a Hagrid-type was getting a haircut.

The people with the giant shears are next to the car in the lower left-hand corner

Aside from the spa, library, catered kitchen, etc. I still think the greatest luxury would be living across from Chacarero. How is it not listed as a dining option under neighborhood highlights? Actually, where is Sam LaGrassa's too? This list needs a revision!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Blinged Out in WNY

This past weekend, Nick and I left Boston around 5 Friday morning and shuffled off to Buffalo. Thanks to the combined early starting time & Sudafed I popped prior to leaving the house, I slept soundly for the first 3.5 hours of the trip. I never take over the counter medicine, and I think it made me a bit dopier than usual. A dream I had right before I woke up suddenly involved Nick and I traveling to Buffalo, but we were attached to the back of our car on water skis and skiing down a highway covered in thick mud. Anywhoo...

As soon as we arrived, we drove downtown to his dad's office so we could go to lunch and then head out for a sail around Lake Erie.

Captain Joe

1st Mate, Nick

Later that evening we headed out to Jim's Steakout, so Nick could get one of his beloved Chicken Finger Subs. (That's Buffalo chicken sub, to you and me; however, "Buffalo chicken" is apparently redundant in Buffalo as it's assumed that's how most chicken will arrive.) It's a good thing that there are no Jim's locations in the Boston area, because most of its menu items significantly (and tastily) contribute to heart disease.

On Saturday, Nick & I joined his mom for a round of golf at her club, Springville C.C. My mother-in-law is the best golfer I have ever played with. I'm not sucking up; it's simply the truth. She's been the club champion for about a bazillion years and was even invited to try out for the Senior LGPA. It's fun to play with her, because it's simply fun to watch her play. Amazing.

After golf, we headed over to East Aurora, NY to BBQ with Nick's sister, her husband, our 2 newphews and also her in-laws that happened to be visiting from CA.

My dad saw this photo & said it's proof we are still in a recession :-)

Jackson is a very neat corn on the cob eater!

Here's Nick fooling around with our 2 cute nephews! They love their Uncle!

After a late breakfast/early lunch on Sunday we hit the road once again. Below is a photo of the best rest stop vending machine I have ever seen. Behold, the Bling King!

I got a sweet $ sign chain, because I am so money

All in all, a great weekend!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

The Family that Runs Together, Stays Together

Over Memorial Day weekend, Nick, Brad and I ran Boston's Run to Remember. When we woke up Sunday morning around 6, the sky was dark and stormy. Exactly one hour later while we were leaving the house, the sun came out and we were treated to a beautiful sunny day! I'm proud to report that all 3 of us improved from last year!
(All photos below are from Brightroom.com. Click here to search for your own race photos.)
Despite having spent the past 3 days partying in Vegas, Nick finished in an impressive 2:08:11. (Last year he ran in 2:16:32.)

Spent the race thinking of ways to spend the couple hundred he won in Vegas

Brad consistently kicks our butts and finished in 1:55:55, which was almost a 5 minute improvement from last year's 2:00:40 time.

I can only speculate what caught his interest in this photo- let's just say it was the finish line
My goal was to run the race under 2 hours, and I was (barely!) able to do just that. I finished in 1:59:22, which was an improvement from last year's 2:07:56 finish.
Mugging for the camera on the bridge during mile 10 or so
I would especially like to congratulate my sister-in-law, Jodi, who just started running on a whim this past January. She ran the Buffalo Half Marathon this same day and kicked butt by finishing in 1:59:30 and 59/199 for her age group!

Eyes on the prize!

Congratulations everyone on a great race!